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Vikings Release Hutchinson, Herrera, Griffin

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(credit: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

(credit: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

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MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Vikings have shed more than $13 million in payroll and three established starters in preparation for free agency.

The Vikings released left guard Steve Hutchinson, right guard Anthony Herrera and cornerback Cedric Griffin on Saturday, cutting three players who’ve been in their starting lineup for the better part of the past five seasons or more.

Hutchinson, a five-time first-team All-Pro pick, spent six years with the team after signing the richest contract for a guard in league history. He was due to draw a $6.95 million salary this season, and the Vikings are aiming to get younger as they rebuild from a combined 9-23 record over the past two years.

Griffin came back from anterior cruciate ligament tears in both of his knees, but he struggled in 2011.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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